Even top-of-the-line computers experience freezing; you try to get dozens of hardware components to work in tandem 100 percent of the time. When it does happen, it’s going to feel like your patience is being tested. Refrain from wielding a sledgehammer and instead take a look at the methods to unfreezing your laptop or computer.

How to Unfreeze a Laptop or Computer

Unfreezing a laptop or computer doesn’t take a degree in computer science to pull off. Unfortunately, there aren’t a lot of methods either.

Unfreezing a Program

If it’s a program that’s causing all the fuss, you can use the Task Manager to silence it for good. This is an excellent tool if clicking “X” isn’t working.

1. Go down to your taskbar and right-click it. When the menu appears, choose Task Manager.

2. At the very bottom of the Task Manager window, click More Details. This will reveal additional tabs along the top of the Task Manager window. Choose Programs.

3. Find the program that’s giving you issues under “Apps.” Right-click on the program and pick End Task.

Use the Power Button

Located in the top right corner, top left corner, or on the top of the tower is a Power button. If the computer won’t respond to anything, make use of it. Press and hold the Power button until the computer shuts down.

Don’t make this method a regular occurance. It can be pretty hard on your computer if you’re constantly forcing it to shut down. Instead, consider making changes that will prevent future computer freezes, rather than relying on a hard shutdown.

How to Prevent Future Computer Freezes

The number of solutions to unfreeze a laptop or computer are few and far between. However, there’s far more steps you can take to prevent your computer from freezing. After all, a healthy computer is a happy computer. Here’s a tip: don’t use one of the methods below; it’s best to use every single one.

Run Programs You Can Handle

Look, it’s totally understandable when you have a game you want to play, but your computer is a potato. So, you try anyways. Unfortunately, hardware is a major factor in running software, whether it’s something light-weight like Microsoft Word or the latest triple-A video game title. The fact of life is this: if your computer can’t run it, it’s going to lock up every time you try.

The same goes with running too many programs. Your CPU can only handle a few tasks at a time and too many will stretch resources thin to the point it freezes. You have to know the limits of your computer, otherwise an upgrade is necessary if you’re shooting for a specific function. If you need a computer that can multitask, a CPU with several cores is going to be incredibly helpful and necessary.

Disable Auto-Startup Programs

Are you sick of starting your computer and waiting 10 years for it to finally “warm up”? Why does it take so long to respond? Well, the culprit very well could be the number of programs that automatically start when the computer is turned on. All those processes are sucking resources from your computer and preventing it from responding. The more auto-startup programs there are, the worse it gets.

Can something be done about it? Absolutely! Here’s how:

1. Go down to your taskbar. Right-click on it. When the menu appears, choose Task Manager.

2. In the Task Manager, click on More Details. It’s at the bottom. This will reveal additional tabs. Click the Startup tab at the top.

Now, what you will see is a list of every single program that is capable of starting up when your computer does. Notice the Status column? If it says “Disable,” then it doesn’t auto-start. If it says “Enabled,” it does start when your computer does.

3. Right-click on a program you want to remove from the startup list. In the drop down menu, click Disable.

Tip: Target programs that have a high impact. Look in the “Startup Impact” column for details. Even low impact programs can pose a problem if they aren’t optimized correctly.

Fix Windows Registry Issues

The registry houses a laundry list of important files—not just any files: system files. Deleting system files can cause a host of problems, including frequent freezes and crashes. Luckily, there’s a way to fix it.

Use CCleaner to scan for registry issues and have them fixed at the same time.

Defrag Your Computer

Fragments of data can be placed in random locations on your computer’s hard disk. And in doing so, can cause a single process to take longer than if the data was in a single location. By defragging the hard disk, you’re restoring data as a whole or as close as you can get.

Imagine you’re trying to get dressed. What do you need? A pair of paints, socks, and a t-shirt. However, you store your pants in your room, socks are downstairs in the living room, and t-shirts are in the shed outside. Can you imagine the time you waste every single time you get dressed? That’s what happens when data on a computer is divided into smaller bits and placed in separate locations; your computer takes longer to get dressed.

1. Open Windows Startup menu.

2. Search the Windows Startup menu with “Defragment and Optimize Drives.”

3. Follow the on-screen prompts.

Bottom Line

While few methods are available to unfreeze computers, there’s far more solutions that can help prevent another freeze. You’ll never get rid of freezing entirely, but you can reduce it to the point that the next freeze is nothing more than an annoyance.